Through the fogOf forty years I still remember those afternoons.
4pm sharp, always.
There you are walking up The driveway with Your scuffed lunchbox, And empty thermos, Another hard day's Work behind you
There you sit at the dining room table Almost exactly the age I am now With a steaming cup of black coffee To hold off the weariness For a few more hours
I still remember The smell of metal and of sweat As you ran your fingers Through your hair Brushing away the shavings and Sometimes squinting Through the flash-burns While explaining to us The challenges and triumphs Of another day at "the shop"
Only now do I fully understand The struggle you endured Only now can I identify with that certain Desperation that aches In the moments of waining hope when you feel the true breadth Of the widening gap between How it is and how you always dreamed it would be.
The most important lesson You taught me without ever saying a word, Dad.
You've proven to me That our souls are a wellspring of strength Yet we have this constant thirst Through your example I know It is within me to endure Until the darkness Of the day passes on In our genes it is written And for this I will be forever grateful.
~Eric Vance Walton~